The temperature’s rising (at least here in the South, it is) and kids are getting antsy with the end of the school year looming. Well, let me rephrase, PARENTS are getting antsy with the end of the school year looming. The scramble to solidify summer time child care plans is upon us and with that, stressful times abound. What better way to handle a problem than to run from it!? And by that, I mean run to a parents’ or girls’ getaway trip for spring break. This isn’t your mother’s spring break, or maybe it is!
Many of you reading this blog may identify yourself as a Millennial parent. And with that title comes quite the burden, as our generation is widely criticized as being self-absorbed, which, as parents, is an unfortunate criticism. I choose to flip this myth! Why can’t we simply enjoy our self care or believe in taking breaks to refresh ourselves? Having time alone to decompress helps adults to be better parents and create stress free, loving environments in which to raise children.
Listen, I’m not advocating that the children stay at home while parents scamper off to a lifestyle of luxury and living best lives for a week. Heck no! I’m simply stating that as parents, let’s get creative and plan a two-for so that the kids can have their cake, and we can eat it too. Split the break down the middle; first half is for the littles and second half is for the bigs.
Here’s a thought: What about starting a tradition of sending the kids to the grandparents’ or cool auntie’s home for the spring break week? If it can be worked out for the kids to take a trip to their beloved grands’ place to be spoiled and doted on for 3-4 days, it’s a win/win! I know that my children would look forward to a week spent with cousins. It doesn’t take a whole lot to make kids happy. And you can totally make it work with a little pre-planning!
I have an auntie who, each year after Thanksgiving, takes a girls trip to Orange Beach, AL. She and her friends link up, shop, dine, imbibe, and live it up! As a child, I found it strange, at first, not understanding the adult ramifications behind this much needed female tradition. But as an adult, I totally get it. It was and still is important for adults to cultivate adult interactions, if for nothing else, for sanity and peace of mind. With that being said, at this time of the year, I propose the “Parents’ Spring Break.” So call up your girlfriends or plan with your man and get it poppin’!
Parenting in the ‘hood can be tough! Sick of Paw Patrol and My Little Pony themes dancing through your dreams at night? It’s time for you to get “on a roll,” call up your girlfriends (well, text them) and get it together. I can assure you that Mayor Goodway and Chick-o-letta would be on the first boat smoking out of Adventure Bay headed to their weekend of fun!
Group Chat Shenanigans
In reference to the text you sent the girls to gas them up about the trip… Aren’t you geeked to actually “see,” in person, those 4-8 individuals you message, gossip, kee-kee, and share screenshots with on a daily in your group chat.
Trip “for” Memory Lane
It’s time to make some new memories, sans screaming toddlers and pubescent adolescents. How many swipes through photos do you scroll before you land on a pic of you and your girls? Or even you and your hubby, looking cute in an “ussie,” that didn’t take place in your church parking lot, diner at the local TGIFridays, or the soccer field? If you’re swiping into 2018 or [gasp] 2017 images, it’s time for that trip.
Shop Til Hubby Drops (when he sees the damages)
There is no better shopping trip to try on and purchase clothes that will sit, tagged and unbothered, in your closet for 6 months (because, ahem, where am I wearing after 5 attire?) than with your girlfriends! But hey, pretending you’re Julia Roberts from Pretty Woman, Cher Horowitz, or some other 90’s fashion icon is totally tubular with your besties.
Back to my Orange Beach, AL trip-taking auntie. She and her girlfriends cultivated traditional stops for their girls’ weekend getaway, and one was a cult-classic brunch spot that topped their list. It was customary to brunch at Brick & Spoon Restaurant and get tipsy from the “Build-your-own” Bloody Mary’s and delectable Mimosa flights. And the definitely had the right idea. I mean, who’s waking up early enough for breakfast while on vacay? And I’m sorry, but the continental breakfast of yogurt, dried out oatmeal, and bagels at the Marriott are NOT CUTTING IT! It’s vacation for crying out loud! Drink your calories! Before noon!
One thing’s for sure, whether you’re going with the girls or hangin’ w/ hubby, brunch is DEFINITELY on the itinerary.
Mention the Unmentionables
So, I’m a sucker for the Victoria’s Secret Semi-Annual Sale, and I fall for it, semi-annualy. Never fails, I leave with a bag full of dental floss, high waisted hipsters, and itchy push-up bras. We’ll affectionately place them in the category of “tags still on” garments that I have TONS of. Wishful thinking clothing, right? Nope! Vacation staples! It’s YOUR lingere’s time to shine!
I’m also a sucker for a $100 bath for my cheeks and forehead they call a facial. But hey, hubby’s outside swinging a club and playing a “sport” that encourages simultaneous Coors Light consumption. When in Rome…
For the Culture
If you’re lucky, your kids’ spring break falls on a festival weekend. But if you’re like me and DGAD, you plan your “Spring” “Break” trip around whatever festival weekend you please! I’m in South Mississippi, so there’s Jazz Fest and French Quarter Fest in New Orleans and a plethora of cool seafood festivals in our area. And depending on the budget and amount of time you have for the trip, maybe fly out for one of the artsy and eclectic music festivals that are popping up all over.
Then there’s also that famous jazz club, black history museum, or artsy fartsy attraction that’s just screaming for an impromptu selfie shoot (Wynwood Walls, anyone?) Now’s your chance. Be cultured.
Take A Hike
I’m hoping you guys are going to enjoy fun in the sun, but why not pick an outdoor activity other than basking on the beach? I love a trip that incorporates a good sweat session! And no, the 10X10 hotel gym does NOT count as a destination. Try out a new workout craze at the local fitness studio or plan for a hike through a national park or recreation area. Rent bikes and roll! I’ve seen the coolest light up bikes that you can rent and take on an evening excursion through the city in New Orleans. Day drinking and brunchin’ is cool and all, but be sure to plan something that gets the heart rate up.
For the past couple of years, I’ve seen a trend in couples and groups of friends (as opposed to only families) taking mountain trips. The TN Smoky Mountains are fab and so are resort styled cabins in GA and all over. Gatlinburg, TN, for instance is a destination that has all of the makings of a super fun getaway. And whether you’re in the market for a snowy adventure or moonshine tasting, these cabin towns know their tourism stuff!
Who wouldn’t be down for a trip to wine country? It’s perfect for the romantic getaway or a weekend getting cultured over a sweet red. I’ve always wanted to learn the intricacies of wine. An evening with my girls and learning from a wine connoisseur all the while getting tipsy? That’s my kind of vacay.
So there you have it. If it’s either a three day weekend eeked out of the Spring Break itinerary or sending the kids to grandmas for the break, set aside some adult time. Once the snows melt and the sun comes out, it’s a time for spring cleansing and renewal. What better way to renew from being stuck indoors all winter than to plan some fun in the sun! And legit, Spring Break lasts a whole week (plus two weekends). That’s 9 whole days to fill. There’s everything RIGHT about staving off a couple days for yourself, your boo, or for you and your girls. And you’ll be a better parent for it!